UAE, one of the richest nations in the world has achieved the dubious distinction of being the most wasteful nation.
The WWF data shows that an average person in the Emirates puts more demand on the global ecosystem than any other, giving the country the world’s largest per-capita “ecological footprint”. The United States runs second.
The chilled swimming pools, monster 4x4s and air-conditioned malls, artificial resort islands that have destroyed coral reefs and an indoor ski slope that still creates snow when it is 120 degrees outside, an over-emphasized feeling that good life requires huge air-conditioned houses and cars, and a disdain for public transportation, is believed to have led the oil-rich nation to this environmental chaos.
Needless to state, the Emirates government has been embarrassed by the WWF report, which it says is flawed.
Their reasons being;
the country took the top spot because its energy consumption is high and emissions are spread among a small population,
WWF report relies on 2003 data that estimate the country’s population at 3 million when it is closer to 5 million, the country’s full damage is not tallied because the WWF study ignores aircraft emissions (The UAE emirate of Dubai claims one of the world’s busiest airports) and
the plants do double duty distilling fresh water from Gulf seawater, an energy-intensive process that accounts for 98 percent of the fresh water in a country with no rivers and little usable groundwater.
The WWF has asked the Emirates government to cut energy use and move toward renewable energy, especially solar power viable in one of the world’s sunniest climates.
Reports such as these are eye-openers and are welcomed because these are the methodical steps one needs to achieve for a less polluted planet.
Source : Lexington Herald Leader